Health by Virus (HbV)

virusCertain subjects light fear like striking a match. Snakes kill two people per year in Texas, but they terrify us. Yet without snakes, rats would increase, causing disease that would kill more people than snakes.

Our capacity to over-fear snakes bears resemblance to healthcare’s overreaction to viruses, which, like snakes, play a crucial role. For instance, in a world where dental x-rays and cell phones have increased our risk of glial brain tumor by over 30%, wild chickenpox reduces glial brain tumor risk by 15%.

A calculating parent would seek wild chickenpox for their children. Sadly, as soon as vaccination for chickenpox occurs, the opportunity for the wild-type chickenpox protection against glioma is lost.

My children are 7 and 4, and not vaccinated. My goal is to get them sick with wild chickenpox before age 10 to help protect them from brain cancer for the long-run. But I’m having a heck of a time because so many have vaccinated their kids against it.

Wild chickenpox has additional benefits; if you catch it early, it reduces risk of asthma by 88%. Furthermore, it gets you out of approximately a week of school; a self-evident benefit to any young person.

Is less chickenpox for more brain cancer and more asthma a good trade-off? Or is catching wild chickenpox the safest option?

Let’s talk measles, a virus many see as super-chickenpox. Governments would like to eradicate measles, however, catching wild measles comes with a 30% reduced risk of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Which would you rather come down with?

We need viruses. Indeed, our human genome is constructed in part from ancient viruses. Eradicating common viruses carries negative consequences. Viruses are part of the circle of life, as are snakes, coyotes, mosquitoes, etc. Our benelles have learned to benefit from these viruses in a long-term health trade-off: (in rapscallion’s voice) I’ll make you sick this week, but I’ll help protect you from brain cancer and asthma for a lifetime.

Simply catching an ear infection in the first year of life reduces childhood leukemia risk by 22%, which, baseline data shows, is a greater respective percentage of protection than the combined percentages of blockbusters carvedilol, atorvastatin, esomeprazole, and trastuzumab. This means an ear infection is more efficient than four of our most expensive drugs put together. We should stop panicking over viruses and focus on their advantages, which outperform any given healthcare plan.

Frankly, we’re doing a disservice to our virus pals. If we give them credit, per the evidence, there would be an additional beneficial placebo effect, which currently is being given as an exclusive government subsidy to pharma.

Even the flu is our friend. A novel new study reveals that flu-infected lungs express five antigens…the same five antigens expressed by lung tumor cells. This means fighting the flu is training benelles to fight lung cancer in a safe way that is customized, among billions of people, for you. In this light, a flu shot decreases your chance of the flu, but increases your risk of radiation, chemo, or lung removal.

Undoubtedly, some people, for instance the immunosuppressed, will come out ahead by vaccinating. But, overall, the statistics indicate viruses are good for long-term health, and vaccination likely increases long-term mortality rates, and inflates healthcare costs, like brain cancer surgeries. Our fear of viruses is irrational; an after-effect of horror stories from past times of scarcity, when we were mostly succumbing to lack of food, clean water, and shelter; not the virus itself.

Health by virus (HbV) is an exciting part of Benelles. We should allow a new path for those who see health as a long-term investment. This would allow people to go for a premium level of health compared with our current healthcare system, plus it would shrink national healthcare costs.

 

Citations:

Indicates chickenpox reduces glioma brain tumor risk by 15%:

Canniff J, et al “Cytotoxicity of glioblastoma cells mediated ex vivo by varicella-zoster virus-specific T cells” J Neurovirol. 2011 Oct;17(5):448-54. doi: 10.1007/s13365-011-0048-z

Shows chickenpox protects against glioma brain tumors:

Wrensch M, et al “History of chickenpox and shingles and prevalence of antibodies to varicella-zoster virus and three other herpesviruses among adults with glioma and controls.” Am J Epidemiol. 2005 May 15;161(10):929-38 Pubmed link

Shows regular dental x-rays increases glioma brain tumor risk by 40%:

Claus EB, et al “Dental x-rays and risk of meningioma” Cancer. 2012 Sep 15;118(18):4530-7. doi: 10.1002/cncr.26625.

Shows using a mobile phone for one year or longer increases glioma brain tumor risk by 30%:

Hardell L, Carlberg M “Mobile phone and cordless phone use and the risk for glioma – Analysis of pooled case-control studies in Sweden, 1997-2003 and 2007-2009″ Pathophysiology. 2015 Mar;22(1):1-13. doi: 10.1016/j.pathophys.2014.10.001

Shows the varicella vaccine does not offer long-term health benefits like wild-type chickenpox offers, such as major risk reduction in asthma (88%) and allergic rhinoconjunctivitis: 

Silverberg J, et al “Chickenpox in childhood is associated with decreased atopic disorders, IgE, allergic sensitization, and leukocyte subsets” Pediatr Allergy Immunol. 2012 Feb;23(1):50-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1399-3038.2011.01224.x

Shows women who had childhood measles had 30% less risk of  Hodgkin’s lymphoma:

Glaser S, et al “Exposure to childhood infections and risk of Epstein-Barr virus–defined Hodgkin’s lymphoma in women” Int J Cancer. 2005 Jul 1;115(4):599-605. Pubmed link.

Shows catching an ear infection or cough in first year of life reduces childhood leukemia risk by 22 percent:

Urayama K, et al “Early life exposure to infections and risk of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia”  Int J Cancer. 2011 Apr 1; 128(7): 1632–1643. doi:  10.1002/ijc.25752

An animal study which reveals how the flu protects against lung tumors: 

Iheagwara U, et al “Influenza virus infection elicits protective antibodies and T cells specific for host cell antigens also expressed as tumor-associated antigens: a new view of cancer immunosurveillance.” Cancer Immunol Res. 2014 Mar;2(3):263-73. doi: 10.1158/2326-6066.CIR-13-0125

Snake bite statistics:

https://www.dshs.state.tx.us/idcu/health/zoonosis/animal/bites/information/venom/snake/